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2002 Conversations

Ron McManus: Leadership center launched (December 30, 2001)

Norman Arnesen: History's supreme event (December 23, 2001)

Dr. Everett Bartholf: Help for the holidays (December 16, 2001)

"Auntie" Anne Beiler: God has a plan (December 9, 2001)

Mary Inman: Raising seven sons for Christ (November 25, 2001)

Tony Hall: Feeding the hungry, one person at a time (Novemer 18, 2001)

John Maracle: A growing Native American Fellowship (November 11, 2001)

Al Peterson: Praying for national leaders (October 28, 2001)

Beverly LaHaye: The family is God's gift (October 21, 2001)

Terry Meeuwsen: Putting family first (October 14, 2001)

Dennis Gaylor: Changing the world, one student at a time (September 30, 2001)

Nate Cole: You are not alone (September 16, 2001)

George Cope: Training pastors, missionaries and evangelists (September 9, 2001)

Thomas E. Trask: Breaking down the barriers (August 26, 2001)

John Kilpatrick: The blessings and challenges of revival (August 19, 2001)

Marie Colwill: A passion for evangelism (August 12, 2001)

Lottie Riekehof: The Joy of Signing (July 22, 2001)

John Castellani: Teen Challenge: The Jesus factor (July 15, 2001)

Mike and John Tompkins: Publishing newspapers and proclaiming the Good News (July 8, 2001)

Chuck Girard: Music, marriage and ministry (June 24, 2001)

Stanley Burgess: The value of a godly father (June 17, 2001)

Dennis Franck: Single Adult Ministries Agency (June 10, 2001)

Thomas E. Trask: The work of the Holy Spirit (May 27, 2001)

Stephen Tourville: The changing church in America (May 20, 2001)

Margaret Columbia: Raising 17 children for Christ (May 13, 2001)

Donna Fahrenkopf: Wanted: a life change (April 29, 2001)

Sean Smith: Spiritual attacks on young people (April 22, 2001)

Josh McDowell: Is the Bible true? (April 15, 2001)

Joyce Meyer: Being a practical Christain (April 8, 2001)

Paul Drost: Multiplication (March 18, 2001)

Bill Bright: Fasting for 40 days (March 11, 2001)

Beth Grant: Women in ministry (February 25, 2001)

Alicia Chole: His people and His presence (February 18, 2001)

Cris Carter: Playing on God's team (January 28, 2001)

Randall K. O'Bannon: The value of life (January 21, 2001)

Dennis Gaylor: Secular colleges: a vital mission field (January 14, 2001)

Music, marriage and ministry

(June 24, 2001)

Chuck Girard is one of the fathers of contemporary Christian music. He is a recording artist and former lead singer for the Hondells and Love Song. Girard has appeared on numerous television programs and continues to record albums and tour the world. He spoke with James Linzey for the Pentecostal Evangel.

Evangel: When did you become a Christian?

Girard: From 1966 to 1970, I was into the hippie and drug scene. But I never forgot about my background in the Catholic church. I became hungry to find out more about God and started studying Eastern philosophies. I began reading the Bible. I saw glaring contradictions in the way people perceived Jesus. Some believe He was only a great teacher, though the Bible said He was God. I had to deal with this.

I didn’t know about the leading of the Holy Spirit. I merely wanted clarity on truth, because I didn’t want to die and discover there was a hell and I had gone there.

The real clincher was the fact that Jesus offered salvation, not based on our own works, but based on His death on the cross and His resurrection. So one night at Calvary Chapel in Costa Mesa, Calif., in February 1970, I received Christ as my personal Lord and Savior.

Evangel: Tell about your baptism in the Holy Spirit.

Girard: I received the baptism in the Holy Spirit, as evidenced by speaking in tongues, when Lonnie Frisbee, a former hippie minister from Calvary Chapel, prayed with me. He taught me to hear the voice of the Spirit and tune into the supernatural. And the simplicity of Chuck Smith’s teaching never allowed me to be blown off course.

Evangel: How did you begin in Christian music?

Girard: Before becoming a Christian, I was working up to five days a week in the studio with some of the greatest musicians of the time.

Then in 1970 after becoming born again, some friends and I revived a group that was part of my nightclub days — a group called Love Song. We became Christians that year and decided to keep the same name. We started playing at Calvary Chapel when the Jesus Movement began. In this environment, we recorded our first Christian folk/rock album — Love Song. The press began to cover the Jesus Movement; consequently, we were quickly brought into national and international prominence.

We were committed to the goals of the gospel. I knew that each member of Love Song on that stage was never there for his own glory. We were on that stage because we wanted to see the gospel preached and people enter into God’s kingdom.

Evangel: What is the key to your happy marriage?

Girard: Karen and I are 100 percent committed to the ministry. Karen and I are spiritually on the same wavelength. Karen attended First Assembly of God in Santa Ana, Calif., as a student at Vanguard University, and I attended Calvary Chapel. So we both have Pentecostal roots.

Also, it’s crucial to give more than you take. I don’t think a marriage can succeed without this principle at work.

Evangel: Who are your heroes?

Girard: I love what pastors do and I look at them with great respect. When I come into their churches, I’m there to serve them. Billy Graham is very much my hero. I love him and hold him in high regard.

Evangel: Describe your devotional time.

Girard: I spend as much time as I can in Bible study and prayer. But also sustaining is the constant awareness that I’m His and everything I am depends on Him. When I get tired of the rigors of traveling, what keeps me going is the knowledge that I’m serving the Church with what I do. And in seeing what God is doing in the Church throughout the world, I’ve learned that every Christian is in full-time ministry.

Evangel: What is the most vital lesson you have learned?

Girard: Without God, I’d surely fail. And with Him, I can do anything. No matter what I might achieve, it’s only brought to pass by His mercy and grace.

Evangel: Anything else?

Girard: To nonbelievers, I would communicate the need for Jesus and that one’s eternal life depends on Him. But I would remind believers that "to live is Christ and to die is gain." If you can live for God, realizing nothing is greater than going to be with the Lord, then you’ve really got a handle on the meaning of life.


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